We couldn’t get enough of our the top 50 Etsy parents whose stories we showcased last October, so we invited them back to Babble for more! Welcome to Babble’s Work/Shop series. Every month, we’ll be featuring a new set of creative insights and business savvy from some of your favorite names in the handmade world (as if you needed a reminder about the amazing products parents can create!).
Our first question? With our New Year’s resolutions still fresh in our minds, we wanted to know: Why is now the right time to start a business? Find out what 15 of the top Etsy parents had to say!
You can start slow 1 of 15The positive to starting a business in January is that it's typically a slower month for shopping. That lets you work out the kinks and get a well oiled routine in place. I like to use the quieter months to catch up and make as much inventory as I can because I know the busy times are coming.
—Jennifer, A Merry Mishap
You only live once 2 of 15New year, new you! It's a great time to remember that you only live once. If there is a business idea or project you've been harboring, now is a great time to bring it to life and see where it takes you.
—Erin, Knot and Bow
Its time for new beginnings 3 of 15January is a time of new beginnings and new determination to try to do some of the things you've always wanted. If starting a business has been a passion of yours, or you have an idea that you are passionate about, at least start looking seriously into how to bring your idea and your business to the public.
—Jo, 42 Things
Handcrafted goods have never been more popular 4 of 15Now is an especially good time to start a creative business because of a strong desire for handcrafted goods. With online marketplaces like Etsy and various craft fairs around the country it's even easier for someone just starting out to get their wares in front of customers.
—Mara and Anna, Dutch Door Press
You’ve got the resources 5 of 15We are living in the day and age of entrepreneurship and online technology. There are many sites to start a website and online shop such as Etsy and Big Cartel, and even implementing a shopping cart into your own Wordpress site is a possibility. In addition, we have resources like Quickbooks, Mac Freelance, and the Square if you need to take credit card orders at small business shows, fairs, or such.
It seems there is always something new for starting your own business now in terms of software, resources, and ideas. I also think it is a good time to experiment with your ideas. If that means keeping your other job while you slowly nurture the business idea, that is great. That is actually how I built INK+WIT. It was a very slow and experimental process that grew into a larger design studio and retail/wholesale market.
—Tara, INK + WIT
Its a time for fresh starts 6 of 15We started our shop in January four years ago. I think the the New Year is a great time to embark on new adventures and start off with a clean slate! I always feel refreshed and renewed with creative energy in January.
—Erin and Nick, Imagination Kids Toys
Etsy makes it easy 7 of 15There are so many wonderful resources out there for first-time business owners! Books, websites, and marketplaces like Etsy make getting started easier than ever. With so many people using the Internet for shopping, your work can be seen with little to no initial investment.
—Anna, Anna Joyce
Its best to start early in the year 8 of 15January is the perfect time to start a business. Starting early in the year gives you plenty of time to get your name out there, find your rhythm, and build a client base before the holiday season of gift-giving begins.
—Ashley, Ashley Pahl
There is no limit to the size of your audience 9 of 15Thanks to the World Wide Web it's never been easier to start a small business. The chances of finding enough patrons who appreciate and are willing to support my work in one city of the world are slim, but on the Internet it was just a matter of time and lots of hard work.
—Suzanna, Sushipot Vintage
Youve got that New Year energy 10 of 15I believe there is never the wrong time to start your own business — provided you have the passion and energy to go for it. Going into the New year always makes you feel more energized and ready to tackle your big plans. If you have a well-thought-out idea and believe it will work, why let another year pass?
—Kerstin, Paul and Paula
Its not as risky as you think 11 of 15Only a generation ago, starting your own business was risky. Now, working for a traditional corporation has become risky! As an entrepreneur, you can master your own destiny, follow your passion and enjoy the freedom and flexibility.
Motivation counterbalances a weak economy 12 of 15The struggling economy has really forced people to go out and make their own opportunities. A weak economy is being counterbalanced by the strong motivation and desire of small business owners.
—Michelle and Steve, Twig Creative
Customers are ready to pay what it takes 13 of 15The general buying culture is starting to understand and appreciate the value of handmade products, and they are thinking about the value of where they are spending their money. People are also looking for unique goods that have a background story — they make the best gifts. That has been a huge boon to the Etsy community and we hope it continues permanently.
—Katie and William, Oh Dier
The Internet makes it easy 14 of 15Now is a great time to start a buisiness because of the Internet and social media. It's so much easier to connect and communicate with your clients. Most of my clients live at the other side of the world and I could have never reached them otherwise.
Your customers are waiting 15 of 15Consumers are more and more interested in personalized service from small businesses. There is no reason to delay taking more control of your work life and accomplish something in a field that you have a passion for - it has the power to change everything.
—David and Adrienne, Manzanita Kids
Looking for more Etsy goodness? Check out our 50 favorite shops for cute, original baby gear.